Can Meredith Grey (Ellen Pompeo) ever really get a break? I mean, it's her show; she's the planet that the drama must orbit around, but damn — let's find her a love story and let her enjoy it already. Let her be happy, no matter who she chooses — if she ever makes a choice. Like... Deluca and Meredith may not be over on Grey's Anatomy, and this fan is totally fine with that.
Deluca (Giacomo Gianniotti) and Meredith were doing well up until all that insurance fraud in Season 15. When the dust settled, Meredith kept her license and kept going forward, but Deluca was feeling used and brushed aside, and he asked Meredith for a little space. Now, though, Deluca seems like he's regretting that space, because Meredith doesn't seem to need him at the moment and he doesn't know what to do. "I blew it. I think I made a big mistake with Meredith," he told Maggie (Kelly McCreary) in the Grey's Anatomy Season 16 winter premiere. "I meant some of what I said — I wanted her to see me, I wanted to know she respected me, but I think asking her to take time might have had the opposite effect." Uh, ya think, Deluca? If there's one thing Meredith doesn't respond well to, it's an ultimatum. She's been through enough strife and she's not here to play games.
Unfortunately, Deluca might not stand much of a chance, thanks to the "present" that Cristina Yang (Sandra Oh, in spirit) sent Meredith — Grey Sloan's newest doctor, Dr. Cormac Hayes (Richard Flood). According to Deadline, this new doc is booked for a recurring role on Grey's Anatomy, which means he's not going anywhere. Dr. Hayes is a hot shot pediatrician with two teenage sons and a dead wife — that's pretty much a perfect match for Meredith, no? He loves his patients, he knows huge loss, he has children... these aren't groundbreaking common attributes, but it could definitely be a step in the right direction when it comes to Meredith and Dr. Hayes getting to know each other — and maybe finding a love connection.
Still, it's hard to know where Meredith's head is at or if this "love triangle" is really even a thing. In the Season 16 winter premiere, Meredith didn't know that Deluca was safe back at the hospital when the accident at Joe's happened, and her reaction to Bailey (Chandra Wilson) was super telling — Meredith wanted to know if Deluca was okay, if he had been there, if he had been hurt. If Meredith didn't care about Deluca, she definitely would have not reacted in that way. She clearly still cares for him.
Additionally, to score one more point for #TeamDeluca, we really have no idea if Meredith even sees Dr. Hayes in a romantic sort of way. To start, Dr. Hayes is Karev's replacement as the head of the pediatric unit at Grey Sloan, so Meredith could resent the fact that he's in her friend's place. Just because Cristina is pushing Dr. Hayes as a love interest for Meredith doesn't mean Meredith is going to take the bait. Plenty of people are parents. Plenty of people are doctors. It doesn't mean that's the foundation of a great relationship.
Grey's executive producer Krista Vernoff told TVLine before the Season 16 premiere that there would be stress on Deluca and Meredith's relationship: “They’ve got to navigate the complexities of a new relationship in the wake of Meredith having been fired and having broken the law,” she said. “There are stressors on their very new relationship coming from the ramifications of those decisions last season.”
That statement certainly makes it seem like they could come back from this. "Navigating complexities" could still mean a happily ever after for them both. Besides, I'm not convinced that McWidow is exactly what Meredith's looking for — and I'm not sure that she is, either.